The Day After
Yesterday we witnessed the effect of an electorate who believes that, “Reality Shows” are reality; that a nation where malice toward those who are different, hatred or resentment toward those who have what we do not have, and indifference toward the most vulnerable among us is not only the expected but the norm. Yesterday it was confirmed what was long suspected, that the “United” States of America is a myth; that the notion that every citizens life and the life of their daughters and sons matter is a myth; that the rights and liberties of a so called free nation belong to everyone is a myth, and that the “pursuit of happiness” has only been a means toward distracting us from the “man behind the curtain”.
Yesterday was not an election about one personality over another, or one party over another party; yesterday the majority chose hatred, greed, indifference, misogyny, sexism, homophobia, injustice, and nationalism, over patriotism and a united country, inclusiveness, charity, love of thy neighbor (no matter their religious beliefs and political affiliations, their level of income, or the color of their skin) and basic humanity.
The day after like every “day after” the rest of “the people” are faced with a choice. We can either become daunted and discouraged by yesterdays results, ready to throw in the towel, or we can choose to become even more committed and stronger in our convictions. We can be afraid, or learn how to transform our fear into a force of nature which, like Nature when the forest is destroyed by a fire responds with its inherent compassion and life force to renew it for a stronger and better forest for the future.
This morning like every morning I rose at 4:00 AM, but different from other mornings and like millions I turned on the TV only to hear the news, stunned and saddened for a moment I feared what was to come. A moment after that thought, I got up and prepared myself, as I have done every morning now for years, to prepare the Zendo for “Early Dawn Meditation & Prayers”. With no one else in attendance I re-committed myself to live the life I have always been convinced is “the better way”. I sat for everyone who did not join me. I sat for myself, for my daughter, and for the numbers of people who’s texts and emails were waiting for my reply in my inbox. I sat for those whom I fear will suffer the most from this act born of ignorance, greed, and indifference. I prayed these words: “May I become at all times both now and forever: A Protector for those without protection; A guide for those who have lost their way; A ship for those with oceans to cross; A sanctuary for those in danger; A lamp for those without light; A place of refuge for those who lack shelter, and a servant to all in need.”
I refuse to believe that yesterdays results are nothing more than just another “Reality Show” and not the “reality” of a Nation which once gave birth to such Presidents as Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Kennedy. A nation who among its citizens lived such greatness of hearts as Doris Day, Susan B. Anthony, Eleanor Roosevelt, Martin Luther King, Jr., Bobby Kennedy, and others. I invite everyone who reads this to join me in making the same choice. Do not let your hearts be made heavy. Do not be daunted by the ways of the world. This will pass but, we must not wait for its passing! We must be that force of Nature to bring it along sooner than later.
As I am finishing writing these words, I happened to notice something: The Light of the Sun rising outside my window.
I love you,